If you want to add a little excitement to your fishing game, you might be considering investing in a new baitcasting reel. I’ve been fishing for a while and, like many people, I enjoy the sport of “catching ’em” more than actually angling. Having said that, there comes a time when you want to add an extra level challenge to your experience and try out a baitcasting reel.
Unlike traditional spinning reels, baitcasting reels depict more of the angler’s ability to feel and understand what’s happening at all times. The use of a baitcasting reel is mainly for people who want to be better anglers.
Our best overall baitcasting reel under $100 is the Piscifun Alijoz baitcasting reel. This reel offers enough functionality for both fresh and saltwater. It can handle up to 33lbs of drag while still being a great reel for inshore and lake fishing. This is the perfect choice for a universal baitcasting reel that can adjust to your fishing day.
Baitcasting reels provide a level of sophistication to angling that you might not have otherwise experienced. They allow for more complex techniques and strategies, as well as a more streamlined cast.
Baitcasting reels are used for many different types of fishing, including bass, trophy fish, and surf fishing.
However, getting started with baitcasting reels isn’t always easy or cheap. There is definitely a barrier to entry in terms of both time and money required. In this article, I want to list some great baitcasting reels under $100 that can help up-and-coming anglers get their feet wet with the style without breaking the bank.
We will discuss some of the basic features of baitcasting reels, discuss some essential things to consider when purchasing a new reel, and then list three great reels under $100.
Disclosure: We made an attempt to include the most up to date models under $100. However, due to the nature of the market, it is possible that while you read this, the price of the product may be higher than $100.
Best Baitcasting Reels Under $100
|Cadence CB8||9||20lbs||6.7oz||Carbon Fiber|
|Lixada||12 or 5||20lbs||6.8oz||Aluminum alloy|
|Sougayilang Fishing||9||18lbs||7.4oz||Anodized aluminum|
1.Piscifun Alijoz Baitcasting Reel (Best Overall)
This is by far one of my favorite baitcasting reels under $100. It is super smooth and easy to use. It has 8 bearings which ensure that it will cast very smoothly – not that you would need more than this with a baitcasting reel!
With up to 33lbs of drag, this makes it an excellent reel for both freshwater and saltwater.
The housing is made out of an aluminum alloy which keeps the weight down while maintaining durability. It has durable brass gearing, which makes this reel reliable and able to stand up to most any fish you throw at it.
You get two gearing options of either 5.9:1 or 8.1:1. You can choose which one is best for the type of fishing you’re planning on doing.
This reel is designed to withstand the hard tugs that you receive from some of your favorite fish. With a magnetic brake, you never need to worry about your cast getting away (which is an all too common problem with baitcasting reels).
- Multiple gear ratios
- Magnetic brake
- Corrosion-resistant bearings
- Brass gearing
- Double Shafts
- Aluminum frame
- Quality for the price
- Works for fresh and saltwater
- Large capacity
- Can make clicking sounds
- Hard to add line to initially
2.Cadence CB8 Baitcasting Reel (Best Value)
This is an excellent reel for an individual who wants to get started with baitcasting reels. It may not have as many features as some of the other models on this list, but it definitely gets the job done.
With a 9 double ball bearing system, you can ensure that you’ll be able to cast smoothly and precisely, no matter what type of line you’re using. Having more bearings allows for smooth casting.
One feature that I really like about this reel is that it’s very durable and causes minimal resistance when reeling in fish. There are six different gearing options, so you can choose whichever one best suits your fishing needs.
Having a carbon fiber frame makes this a lightweight and durable option. You can take it with you on any fishing trip without worrying about loss or damage from the environment around you.
Unlike our top pick, this reel only allows 20lbs of drag instead of 33lbs. This may not seem like a big difference, but depending on what you’re trying to catch, that extra 10lbs could be very valuable.
Because of the price point of this reel, it is a great choice for those who are getting started and want to see if they like using baitcasting reels before investing more money.
- Carbon fiber shell
- Brass pinion gears
- 9 stainless steel bearings
- Adjustable magnetic brake
- Only weighs 6.7oz
- Great casting
- Great value with features
- Drag tensioner can wobble
- Side plates can fall off
3.Lixada Baitcasting Reel (Cheapest Pick)
I wanted to add a cheap pick to this list to ensure that everyone who wants to get into baitcasting reels has the opportunity to do so. This reel comes in at just under $30 and provides everything you need to start fishing with a bait caster without breaking the bank.
There are two model options you can choose from. The main difference is the number of ball bearings and also the gear ratio. One has 12 ball bearings with a 6.3:1 gear ratio, while the second option comes with 5 ball bearings and a 7.3:1.
You can choose between a left-handed or right-handed option, depending on your preference, or whichever is best for your comfort. You’ll want to ensure that you choose whichever reel best suits your fishing needs by selecting the appropriate reel for your comfort and fishing style.
This reel is made of aluminum alloy, which makes it lightweight and durable. Both models in this line have a magnetic brake system, so you can be sure that there won’t be any backlash in the cast when using this reel.
- Left hand or right-hand options
- 20lbs of drag
- Brass gearing
- Metal bait wheel
- Great for freshwater fishing
- Easy casting
- Long casting
- Easy setup
- Anti-reverse breaks overtime
- The magnetic brake can fail
4.Sougayilang Fishing (Best Bass Baitcasting Reel)
I picked this reel for this list because it’s perfect for bass fishing. It comes in with an 8:1 gear ratio and 18lbs of drag which is enough to help you catch bigger fish. This is definitely one of the best reels on our list for pulling in monster-sized bass.
This reel is made from CNC machined aluminum which makes it lightweight but also very durable. The design of this reel is easy to use but also ergonomic, which means it will be super comfortable for long day fishing adventures.
With nine stainless steel ball-bearings, this reel will allow you to cast easily and set your lure right where you want it. With this option, you’ll have a reliable reel that is up for the task when it’s time to reel in a big one!
This reel is ideal for those who are looking to get into freshwater fishing with a bait caster but are on a budget.
- 9 ball bearings
- Stainless steel bearings
- Magnetic brake system
- Rubberwood handle
- Swing-wing side cover
- 1-year support
- Smooth casting
- High quality for an affordable price
- Easy-adjust braking system
- Great for stick bait
- Starts squeakings
- Needs a lot of maintenance
Baitcaster Buyers Guide
Baitcasting reels are some of my favorites for catching bass and trout in freshwater. They also can be used to catch some of the most desirable trophy saltwater fish as well.
They are available nearly everywhere fishing equipment is sold, and they come in a variety of styles, features, and sizes. The reels for sale on our list are all priced under $100, making them affordable to most anglers looking to add one to their arsenal.
When it comes to finding the right reel for your fishing needs, you should consider what size fish you expect to be catching. A larger diameter will allow you more room on the spool for line and bait, making it easier to cast further distances. Larger reels also help fight large fish as they can handle heavier drag pressure and heavier line.
Design and Materials
The most crucial aspect of any fishing tool is how it performs. While other elements come into play, like comfort and durability, if your tools don’t perform how you expect them to, they are essentially useless.
When it comes to baitcasting reels, a few different materials can be used to make them. Aluminum alloy is most common and lightweight, which makes it ergonomic and comfortable. It also is reasonably strong but not as durable as other materials.
Graphite frames are another strong and durable option while also being more lightweight than their metal counterparts. Aluminum alloy side plates add support to the carbon graphite frame while allowing for a better design overall.
Sideplates can be made of aluminum, magnesium alloy, or steel, depending on the manufacturer and price points. A good mid-range material is a stainless steel. While it isn’t as lightweight as other materials, it does allow for corrosion resistance.
Countless other materials can be used in baitcasting reel construction, but you will have to pay more for them. Titanium frames are the strongest and most durable, but they require costly manufacturing processes. Ceramic bearings provide near frictionless rotation but cost nearly twice as much as stainless steel bearings.
Bail and Rotation
There are two types of baitcasting reels: those with centrifugal cast control and those without.
A centrifugal cast control will allow you to adjust the tension of the level, which allows for more precise casting.
Casting tensions can be adjusted using the fingers or thumb but requires some practice to master.
Centrifugal cast controls are designed to help the angler to make an accurate and balanced cast, allowing them to place their lure or bait closer to where they want it without actually having to worry about tangled lines.
If you aren’t looking for a centrifugal cast control but still want precision, opting for one with an adjustable magnetic brake system will help ensure that you won’t get any backlash in the cast when using this reel.
Casting tension on a magnetic brake system can be adjusted using your fingers or thumb without modifying any knobs.
Many baitcasters will come with one of the two types of cast controls standard, but most will not be adjustable.
Most baitcasting reels are designed to be lightweight, although some of the larger offshore reels can be quite heavy.
If you are planning to fish for smaller game, an ultra-lightweight reel will not only make your day more enjoyable when out on the water but will allow you to feel everything that is happening when a fish runs.
This helps in knowing what’s going on with your lure or bait, affecting your chances of catching that perfect fish.
Balance is another critical factor in how the reels feel in your hand and can affect how well you perform during those long days on the water.
Maintenance and Care
One of the most important aspects that many anglers neglect is proper maintenance and care of their equipment. Baitcasting reels are no different and should be kept as lubricated as possible to ensure that everything stays in good working order.
Greasing the reel’s spool will help to prevent it from corroding, so make sure to take a look at the manual to understand how your specific baitcasting reel should be adequately maintained.
After fishing, never leave your baitcasting reels stored in the open. Instead, make sure to clean off all excess moisture and store it inside a protective case or cloth bag to keep everything in good working order for your next fishing trip.
Drag weight determines how much force is needed to pull the line off of your fishing reel and can be either fixed or adjustable. A fixed drag system is one that you cannot adjust and is designed for beginners who aren’t looking at fishing for large fish.
If you plan to use heavier lures or live bait, an adjustable drag system will allow you to tighten it down when needed, potentially preventing the fish from getting off your line.
The lighter the drag system or level is, the easier it is to pull the line off of your reel, but you may sacrifice smoothness and durability.
The more drag weight you have on your reel, the harder it will be to pull the line off your reel. This is a significant factor when choosing a baitcasting reel – especially for beginners who aren’t sure how much weight they will need to properly set their hook.
This is not as important as other components such as casting control but is definitely something to consider.
Gear ratios refer to how many times the line will spin on your reel each time it revolves on the spool. If you like to fish for smaller game such as panfish or bass, opting for a rod and reel combo with a higher gear ratio will be beneficial because of how light they are.
On the other hand, if you plan on using larger lures and bait for larger fish such as tuna, opting for a lower gear ratio will help ensure that the line doesn’t break off during your fight with these heavier fish.
When choosing a baitcasting reel, it is imperative to consider this because it can affect what type of fish you are going after or how heavy your line is.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can a baitcasting reel be used in freshwater or saltwater? – Yes
- Can you cast a baitcasting reel? – Yes
- Does a baitcasting reel have a magnetic brake? – Yes
- Is a baitcasting reel easy to use? – It can be tricky for newbies, but over time, it will become easier
- Can baitcasting reels be used with lures? – Yes
When choosing a baitcasting reel, it is essential to know what you will be fishing for and an idea of how heavy your line will be.There are plenty of different reels that offer the same basic features, but some of them may provide some additional tools or components that can make your day on the water even better.
Our best overall pick is the Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel.
With a smooth drag system, large gear ratio, and durable construction, this is a great all-around choice for any angler looking for one good reel to get them started.
Choosing a baitcasting reel is one of the most important decisions that an angler can make, especially if you are just starting out. By understanding what to look for in a baitcasting reel, anyone can have the confidence necessary to catch more fish and have a great day on the water.
My name is Ruben. I love fishing like most guys I know. Fishing is so much more than just an outdoor activity- its an escape, its therapy and so much more. I put together a team of other professional anglers in order to create the most inclusive fishing resource.